Herdsmen killings: Ortom fires back at Sultan over jihad statement

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Benue State Government has reacted to the recent comment by the Sultan of Sokoto, Alhaji Sa’ad Abubakar lll-led Jama’atu Nasril that the herdsmen killings across Benue, Taraba and other parts of the North, were not continuation of the late Usman Danfodio’s jihad.

The Sultan, who doubles as President General of the JNI with its headquarters in Kaduna, warned against taking Nigerian Muslims for granted by denigrating the Islamic community.

Reacting, however, the state government in a statement by Tever Akase, Chief Press Secretary to Governor Samuel Ortom, insisted that JNI should rather blame Miyetti Allah over the alleged Jihad statement.

His statement below:

Another instance where the same group declared jihad on the country can be obtained in the following link:  .

Governor Ortom who referred to such statements including the ones quoted above from the Fulani Nationality Movement, reiterated his call for the arrest of the leadership of the groups to prevent further killings in the state.

Governor Ortom used the programme to draw the attention of security agencies to the inflammatory statements made by the said groups vowing to wage a jihad and mobilize their members to invade Benue and resist implementation of the Open Grazing Prohibition and Ranches Establishment Law passed by the state.

The Benue State Governor has enormous respect for the leadership of Jama’atul Nasir Islam and all other Nigerian Muslims and would not have launched an attack on the religion. We reject and condemn this negative branding of the Governor by JNI.

Since assumption of office, Governor Ortom has embraced and encouraged all religious groups in the state especially the Muslim community as evident in the cordial relationship between the present administration and leadership of the Islamic faith. It is therefore strange that the headquarters of Jama’atul Nasir Islam has chosen to assault the Governor’s reputation on a matter which has verifiable evidence unconnected with him.

Governor Ortom has demonstrated statesmanship and focus in handling the secuirty challenge in the state and he appreciates the contributions of all stakeholders particularly religious leaders both Christian and Muslim towards the return of peace to the affected parts of Benue State.

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